CHARLESTOWN, Ind. (WDRB) -- Charlestown took a major hit when its only hospital closed years ago. The former St. Catherine regional hospital closed abruptly in 2015 after going bankrupt three years earlier.

“The hospital employed about 125 people at the time, so for a community our size, that's a loss,” Mayor Bob Hall said.

Hall said the growing city needs options for health care, especially during an emergency.

“Depending on what part of the county they're in, they could see a 20- to 30-minute delay,” Hall said.  

Local company Dhvaj bought the building and now has plans to open a hospital there again called North Clark Community Hospital. Hall said this project will be lifesaving.

“We're excited about seeing them do it right and investing to be able to bring it into service again,” Hall said.

Dhvaj CEO James Wesp said the hospital will provide urgent care, addiction services and in- and out-patient diagnostics, along with other specialties.

City officials hope the new hospital will bring a wave of economic development to Charlestown.

“If there's another reason for people to come to Charlestown, that will definitely benefit Charlestown in terms of restaurants and things like that,” Chamber of Commerce Secretary John Spencer said.

The timeline for when North Clark Community Hospital will open is still unclear. Wesp said getting the building up to code is a work in progress, but it will be sometime late this year. 

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